Review Summary: Confessions of “a son, a brother, a father and a friend”.
Hatebreed are one of those bands that are not willing to compromise themselves. They are a band of pride. A band of honor. As a matter of fact, as Jasta puts it, he would literally not be standing on the grounds of the U.S.A., hadn’t it been for honor. And that, my friends, is a bold statement.
So, is the new album, artistically titled “The divinity of purpose”, an experimental album? No sir. Does it bring to the table something never heard from the Hatebreed before? No sir. Does it talk about anything else than finding your own inner strength? NO SIR!
No, Hatebred were never a band who was aiming at something new, fresh or innovative. They refuse to expand their capabilities, because they know that the sound they produced 19 years ago is still relevant and they feel no need to change it. Literally. This is what they do and they do it so damn well, that if there were no other bands playing exactly the same genre, one could speculate that they invented a whole new genre. Breedcore. I actually coined a term for what they play, because they deserve it. They’ve put so much blood, sweat and tears into denying their own artistic maturity, that they deserve their own genre. This is more than metallic hardcore. This is breedcore.
“The divinity of purpose” only solidifies their dominance in breedcore, for they have once again made an album that every song actually kind of sounds the same, but has its own identity, charm and passion. Jasta is determined to rape us yet once again with the thoughts of growing strong, proud and self-sustaining. And at that he succeeds, big time.
Lyrically this album delivers. “Own your world” does not waste any time guessing “who’s got more heart than you”, since the answer is delivered in a choir-shouted “no one!” Such powerful lyrics make goosebumps not a matter of “if” but “how long”. Very long!
Lyrics keep blooming throughout the already mentioned “Honor never dies”. Jasta shows his humanity, he opens up to the listener, admitting that he is, after all, only a “son, a brother, a father and a friend. No more, not any less”. That means a lot to us, ‘breeders. We’ve always looked up to Jasta, since the day one, when he shouted how he wiped someone’s spit from his face. Then, we thought “oh man, Jasta must be some kind of God, how he endures so much pain and hardship and somehow always perseveres”, but now, oh man. He’s just like us!
He is, indeed, a son (he obviously must have a mother), a brother (his mother had two or more sons… or is he talking about some kind of a strong friendship, where you call your friend a brother? It is not made clear in the lyrics), a father (well that I did not know, I admit it. Well played, Jasta, you announced that you have a baby in this hidden message) and a friend (thus he must have at least one friend). No more is Jasta “just a God of strength” but he’s also A HUMAN and that is an important message here. This is, as album already suggest, “The divinity of purpose”. To be a son, to be a brother, to be a father and a friend. This is purpose, and it is divine.
But lyrical mastery does not end there. Oh no! In “Put it to the torch” he wickedly asks questions that will be answered in every live show from now on; when Jasta will shout “Am I supposed to be sorry, my words struck a nerve” a whole group of ‘breeders will answer “NO JAMEY, YOU ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO BE SORRY!”. I can already imagine a crowd going crazy, answering to Jasta’s rhetorical questions.
And Jasta will not be satisfied with merely one answered question; no sir, he will want more. Thus, he will ask “Am I supposed to be sorry that I lift dust where my footsteps once were?” and we will again respond, “NO JAMEY, THE DUST HOLDS THE BLAME FOR LIFTING ITSELF!”. As a matter of fact, I can’t wait to see them live and to answers Jamey’s questions in the suggested manner.
There’s also something to be said about the music and production; it’s different. A bit. Riffs are solid… “straight to your face with the truth and pride” kind of solid, but that’s what we’re expecting! However, this time, as one reviewer suggested, Hatebreed bunch included a lot more punk-ish influences and, as the same reviewer points out, there’s still a lot of that metal sound we come to love from Hatebreed. But don’t be fooled, it still sounds like every other Hatebreed song we love! Awesome!
To sum things up; this album is amazing and that’s an assertion. Lyrics will blow you away, music will have that “I heard that before” vibe that we love when listening to Hatebreed and before long, you’ll notice that you’ve listened to the album 3 times in a row, because you won’t recognize that songs differ. Now, I know, this might sound a bit insulting to some, but remember, as Jamey put it:
“I just think it’s because we haven’t changed the recipe too much. I think we’re reliable as a go to band if you’re looking for something heavy. I think we have a good catalog of good, solid, heavy songs and that’s all we wanted to be – we wanted to be like the Ramones of crossover or the AC/DC of metallic hardcore. We just wanted to keep it simple, keep the formula to the point.” ~ Jamey Jasta, God of Strength
Good for you!